Obsessed Runner Blog

2024.07.17 - Run or run again

The response to my email discussing my running being sidelined brought forth a deluge of responses with similar stories. Just letting you know, those of us facing medical nightmares are not alone. Stories of running through or trying to return to running after chemo, radiation, heart attacks, and trauma that included broken bones, brain injuries and so much more filled my inbox. The recurring theme, our running prepares us for pain, but also turns us into survivors, giving us the tools to fight our way back. Tools like persistence, patients, and hope. Running also teaches us that every healthy day is a gift not to missed.

Run smart, recover smart, so we can run forever,

Randy Step, an admitted obsessed runner who thanks you all for caring, and for those of you on the sidelines, I am cheering you on to fight the good fight. The rest of you, get your butt out that door!


2024.07.10 - This running life

Very few of us get through life without facing a medical nightmare, but our daily runs train us to be ready for the hard days. In my 30’s, and just after being featured as Michigan Runner of the Year, I was running the Freep marathon where I hit 20 miles just under 6 minute pace, when my heart decided to go to hell. In reality, it was the day I found out I was born with a birth defect, only having 2 flaps on what should have been 3 on my aortic valve. The valve prematurely aged and chose that day to stick open and send me into congestive heart failure. I could write a book about what happened next, but here are the cliff notes: I had a high-risk surgery called the Ross Procedure (you can look it up if so inclined), not approved by the AMA at the time. The operation was a success, but the post-op heart was about a minute and a mile slower. This obsessed runner grieved the loss of a fast pace, but I was able to still run.

My love of the daily run remained and it got me 30 more years of joy … Then on Labor Day, 2023, a new nightmare struck as my heart went out of rhythm, aging scar tissue from the old surgery seems to be the culprit. I’ve been somewhat quiet about it as I’ve gone through several surgical procedures, and some hospital stays, but I’ve been able to walk with a bit of running through it all.

That said, after 10 months away from the run, modern medicine has me back on the road, again, a couple minutes per mile slower, but I’m smiling through every mile! Ideally, we would run until our final day, but realistically, we must accept that it may end at any time. When that day comes, we will all still be runners till the end, carrying with us, all the miles we have ever ran, miles that are part of us, never to be taken away.

Enjoy every healthy day as they prepare us,

Randy Step, an admitted obsessed runner who ran more than walked 5 miles yesterday!

2024.06.12 - My 2 mile run

The most significant run in my life, at least the one I think back on most often, is not my first Boston or Kona Ironman finish, but is the first time I ran 2 miles without stopping. Other than the obligatory one mile run in high school, why would someone run farther? Recreational running was a foreign concept to me. Until college, I had not associated with anyone who ran. I can’t remember the exact catalyst of my attempt to run 2 miles without stopping, maybe it was seeing other runners out there or some conversation concerning running. What I do remember is that it was hard, felt endless, left me wiped out, and a feeling of accomplishment, more so, than anything I had ever done. A life changing experience that launched a new me.


May today’s run be glorious and memorable,


Randy Step, an admitted obsessed runner, who when seeing someone out on a run, knows that I might be witnessing someone doing something that is extraordinary!

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